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2012 Country Directors
HELP Fellowships are highly competitive. HELP International strives to select the most qualified candidates to direct teams of participants in 8 countries around the world. Find out more about what it means to be a HELP Fellow here.
Hilary was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. This always proved to be an adventure and had a great influence on her favorite things being sitting in the sun, skiing, golf, and racquetball. She is finishing her undergraduate degree at BYU in Socio-Cultural Anthropology with a double minor in Latin American Studies and International Development. She worked as a volunteer for HELP International this past summer in El Salvador. She realized her desire to work in the field of development after her travels to Israel, Egypt, Jordan, Mexico, and El Salvador. During this time she studied subjects such as micro-finance and social entrepreneurship which lead to a great interest in NGO accountability and evaluation. After her work with HELP is over she hopes to further these studies by getting a Masters of Public Administration with an emphasis in International non-profit management.
Amanda Miller grew up in Reno, Nevada in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. She studied Political Science and International Studies at Brigham Young University, Idaho. After finishing her degree she worked for nonprofits in Washington DC and served a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Southern Italy. She is currently working on her Master of Public Administration with an emphasis in nonprofit administration at Brigham Young University. In her free time, she loves cycling, hiking, and kayaking.
Katherine was raised in the Northwestern corner of Montana. She loves being outdoors and exploring new places. She is currently completing graduate work in public administration and anticipates beginning law school in the fall of 2012. Since she was young, Katherine has felt an obligation to reach out to others in need. This is what initially prompted her to study and volunteer in Guadalajara, Mexico and later serve an LDS mission in Tokyo, Japan. Over time, that desire has evolved into a passion for international development and human rights advocacy. Her previous education and career experiences lie in business development and management, so Katherine is now pleased to apply these skills as a Country Director in Fiji.
Modesta worked with a variety of International organizations including UNFPA, Department for International Development (DFID) UK, British High Commission, Kinder not Hilfe e.V (KNH) Germany and CARE, and other non-profits. She did her Master Degree in Foods, Nutrition and Community Development in India and Social Development program in Canada. As part of her work, she travelled extensively rural and urban parts of various countries and gained in depth knowledge and experience of the developing world and passion for community development specially promoting girl child education. She visited various countries including Sri Lanka, Germany, London, Thailand and Singapore attending International conferences, providing consultancies, promoting child and youth development, addressing gender and health issues. Modesta has provided consultancies as Trainer and Facilitator and has facilitated various training courses for national, state, district/county staff. Working with UNFPA for the National Reproductive health program as a Technical Advisor, she carried a qualitative research analysis in 5 Indian districts as a pilot project that lead in institutionalizing the national level training program to increase the participation of men in health programs. For the State school Health project of DFID she developed a case study on a girl child in Andhra Pradesh, India that helped government officials, civil society and the private sector to identify policy statements on gender into actions. Modesta represented UNFPA in International Conference in London on ‘Poverty, Inequality and Health’ and had an opportunity to present in small group discussions about the need based project development process in addressing the poverty.
Working in CARE (US based international non-profit organization), Modesta managed the State health project including training State Officials and CARE staff on educating rural mothers in addressing the maternal and child mortality issues and developed need based health communication material.
As the Director of nonprofits in US, Modesta took lead role in policy development processes for refugees, and new immigrants, working with State/National Leaders and National Non Profit Congress.
She enjoys spicy food, like to read books, and speaks 3 Indian languages. She was a parachute jumper and was awarded several medals and certificates in the fields of education and sports! She lives in Texas with her husband and a three year old Golden Retriever. Her only son is studying final year of Pre medicine.
Having been born in Hawaii, living in Japan, and eventually setting in California, Brook has always been predisposed to loving warm weather, traveling, and all things relating to the ocean. She graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science in Public Health Education from Brigham Young University, which led her to do an internship in the Dominican Republic for several months. The internship changed the path of her career and was what instilled in her a passion for international development, public health, and women’s reproductive health. After graduating in 2008, she accepted a job immediately with the American Lung Association in Utah and the Utah Department of Health where she gained an understanding in non-profit work and a firm grasp on working for the government. Brook has since worked for the National Environmental Public Health Tracking Network, has traveled to Vietnam, Ecuador, and several other countries, and has collaborated with countless non-profits through her coalition work and advocacy. She currently resides in Scottsdale, Arizona and is pursuing her Masters of Art in Social Justice and Human Rights. Besides always planning her next three trips, you can find Brook with her nose stuck in a book; she also loves to: eat/cook ethnic foods, watch documentaries and visit museums, discover and play new music, participate outside in some sort of sport she’s not good at, make friends in random places, and you can bet she’ll be documenting all of that real-time through facebook/blogging/twitter.
Megan was born and raised in a small suburb outside of Northeast Philadelphia, called Hatboro. She moved to Washington, DC to study International Relations at American University. She graduated in December 2011 with a Bachelors Degree in IR, and specializations in Latin America, International Communications, and Spanish. During her time at American University, she did an Alternative Break in Guatemala, during which she experienced Latin American culture for the first time. The next year she spent a semester in Santiago, Chile. Some of her favorite moments were when she sandboarded in the Atacama Desert, learned to tango in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and went to Easter Island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and had the best tuna empanadas of her life. Her plans for the future include gaining a Masters Degree in International Communication, traveling more throughout Latin America, and getting a puppy.
Amanda was born and raised in Northern California, right between San Francisco and Sacramento. She is currently a student at Brigham Young University pursuing a degree in International Relations with an emphasis in Economic and Political Development, and she has been studying Spanish since high school. She enjoys playing any sport (especially soccer, cross country, and volleyball) as well as big game hunting and spending time outdoors. Amanda loves to stay active and busy, and will jump into any game of soccer rain or shine. Her trip to Nicaragua as a first-wave volunteer was her first exposure to international travel, and she instantly fell in love with Nicaragua and its people. After three weeks as a volunteer, Amanda was offered the position of Country Director, and she is overjoyed to be able to spend the rest of her summer helping in Nicaragua.
Ibada is an interdisciplinary sustainability professional from Washington, D.C. She began her career in development in 2005 at a women's prison in Quito, Ecuador. Following this experience, she received her BA in Global Justice and Human Rights with minors in Spanish and Hispanic Cultures and Biology. She went on to work as a cultural ambassador and language assistant with the Ministry of Education and Science in Spain. She received her MA in 2008 in Human Rights and International Development from Universidad Pablo de Olavide, graduating summa cum laude. Ibada was pre-admitted to the joint PhD program, but after one year of working on her dissertation decided to begin laying the foundation for a social enterprise focused on fashion as a tool for inclusive, sustainable development. Since then, she has redirected her interests in order to pursue a more creative path, exploring the relationships between biodiversity, poverty and design. In 2011, after working with Leaders for Social Change at Yale, she was awarded a grant from Fondazione Zegna to conduct research in sustainable development and social innovation in the fashion industry at The University of Ideas (UNIDEE) in Italy. When she is not working she is traveling, knitting, watching TED videos, reading the latest issue of Entrepreneur and/or Marie Claire (sometimes simultaneously!), collaborating with other aspiring changemakers, and studying sustainable design at Minneapolis College of Art and Design. Iba is also known as The Ethical Fashion Missionary, her ardent blogging personality.
Jared Baird was born in Up-state New York and raised in western North Carolina. He is currently studying public health at Brigham Young University with plans to eventually have a career in global epidemiology. His interest in international development and humanitarian aid began with his 2 year mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Mexico City, and exploded with his experience last year as a volunteer for HELP in El Salvador. While he is currently studying public health, he is very interested in all aspects of development including micro-finance and home development/construction, as well as all health projects. In his free time, Jared loves to be outdoors no matter what the activity. From snowboarding, hiking, climbing or soccer, anything outside is worth pursuing.
Chanel is a clinical social worker who is enthusiastic about improving the conditions for children throughout the world. While receiving her bachelors and masters of social work from the University of Utah she participated in a child welfare fellowship, interned with DC FS, and received an international emphasis. She has participated in development projects in: Kenya, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Columbia, and Mongolia. Chanel dreams of creating roots in Africa. She is looking forward to returning to East Africa and has a deep desire to find solutions for street children and orphans there. Chanel currently works as a child therapist at a counseling center. Her strong commitment to serving the needs of disadvantaged youth was strengthened by working with local nonprofits such as: Headstart, Boys and Girls Club, Odyssey House, Generations Humanitarian, VIDA, and Grandfamilies. Chanel had the privilege of interning with Utah Health and Human Rights last summer, as a trauma therapist for refugees, who survived war trauma and torture. She has found that true joy comes through service and hopes to continue to work in international development all of her life.
Sarah grew up in Urbandale, Iowa. She has been enamored with Africa since she was a little girl, but originally wanted to study lions and other exotic animals. Since serving an LDS mission in South Africa and Botswana, her focus has shifted to humanitarian work. Sarah obtained a BA in English with an African Studies minor, then pursued a Master of Public Administration with an international not-for-profit emphasis from Brigham Young University. She has since consulted for a variety of international nonprofits, including the Human Development Foundation (Thailand), Inside-Out-Learning (Kenya), Ascend Alliance (Mozambique), and Sowers of Hope (Congo). She has also coordinated service expeditions to Mexico for over 200 volunteers for A Child's Hope Foundation. She was formerly the Executive Director for Empower Playgrounds in Ghana and the Marketing Director for Utah County Crisis Line. She is currently pursuing a doctorate in Global Health from Arizona State University. Sarah hopes to study the misdiagnosis of malaria in African children under five and the corresponding underdiagnosis of pneumonia and typhoid. During her free time, you will find Sarah reading, running, hiking, singing musical theater songs, playing guitar or flute, watching Planet Earth, or practicing her cabaret dancing. One of her favorite quotes is by Martin Luther King, Jr: "Everybody can be great, because everybody can serve... you only need a heart full of grace, a soul generated by love."
Nat was born and raised in Bangkok, Thailand. He found himself a second home in Logan, Utah and is majoring in Agribusiness and Business with minor in International Business and Economics at Utah State University. He enjoys experiencing new adventure in life, and pushing the limit of his abilities. Nat loves travelling and spent last 7 months of 2011 in 2 study abroad programs in Chile and Sweden, with a lot of world exploring on the side. He is a soccer fanatic and plays soccer recreationally and competitively all year round. He wants to be back in his home country and help improve the lives of as many people as possible, and help pass on his knowledge gained from his education at USU and experiences from around the world.
A native of Spanish Fork, Utah, McCall studied Speech Communications and Human Resources at Utah State University. She began working in the HELP International office in 2010 as the Human Resource Manager. While working at HELP she volunteered on the El Salvador team in 2010 and performed a site visit to the Belize team in 2011. McCall also spent 18 months living in and serving the people of the Philippines, using her fluent Tagalog. McCall is excited to implement her previous HELP experience in this year’s Lugazi team. She enjoys spending her time with family and friends while seeking new adventures. She loves boating, running, 4-wheeling, and other outdoor activities.
Born and raised in a small Wisconsin town perched on the bluffs of the Mississippi River, Troy grew up visiting his grandparents farm, canoeing the many local tributaries, and riding his bike over the hills and valleys of the badger state. Prior to receiving his undergrad degree from the University of Wisconsin in 2001, he spent a year abroad tracing his Dutch roots in the Netherlands, sailing the Ijsslemeer, and delivering Heineken. Troy joined the Peace Corps and served in Mali, where he DJ’d a weekly educational radio show and raised funding for the construction of a village health clinic. He stayed in Mali following his volunteer service and worked for USAID-Mali, installing Internet connections at local radio stations and later worked on a micro-finance project reinforcing the agribusiness sector of the country. Troy returned to the University of Wisconsin to pursue a Masters of International Public Affairs at UW’s La Follette School. Since his return with his wife, Awa, they have worked with the UW’s African History Department as a translator, assisting in the documentation of the Malian Diaspora in Lagos, Nigeria. Troy and Awa also have a busy 1 year old son, Vincent, who has developed an appreciation for Tuvan throat singing.
Rebecca grew up in the south and calls North Carolina home. She stayed in the land of BB-Q and fresh peaches to attend college at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Following college she moved to Colorado as she was accepted into a two-year Fellowship program in Leadership and Service at the United States Golf Association. After falling in love with the Rocky Mountains, Rebecca ventured further north to work and live in Montana, where she became the Associate Director of Interactive Media and Strategic Communications for The University of Montana Foundation. Currently her neighborhood is composed of temples and the aroma of dhal bhat, as she is residing and working in Kathmandu, Nepal. Rebecca loves to spend time outdoors especially if that time includes a golf club in her hand or skis on her feet. She also enjoys creative endeavors and is both a painter and graphic artist.
Growing up in California and New York and fortunate to tag along on a few of her father’s business trips, Holly learned her passion for travel and learning new cultures at a young age. Viewing first-hand the vast disparities in the global distribution of wealth during trips to South America and the Caribbean inspired Holly to earn a BA in International Relations at the University of Southern California. While at USC she lived for eight months each in Paris and Australia and was able to travel extensively around Europe and Oceania.
After graduation Holly moved to Washington DC where she interned at a think tank researching human rights abuses in South America. Finally landing in the private sector, Holly has worn several hats working at a start-up company in Chicago learning business skills that ultimately she’d like to apply to international development work.
In her spare time Holly has volunteered for several non-profits, most notably the AIDS Foundation of Chicago with whom she has run three marathons, helped to train other athletes to complete marathons, raise funds and awareness. After recently spending time in Ethiopia and Turkey, Holly is currently pursuing her Masters degree in International Development from the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver. Holly continues to be an avid runner, completing 6 marathons and hoping to squeeze in one more prior to leaving for Uganda. She also very much enjoys living in Colorado, learning to snowboard and loving the outdoors in general.